what to do in dubai airport during solo travel

Top 15 Things to Do in Dubai Airport | Solo Female Travel

Gone are the days where people used to consider airports an area meant just from travelling, or in some cases, waiting to board flights. These days, people either check in early to spend some time around the airport or take their sweet time before departing from the airport. 

Over the last few years, international airports around the world have been renovated to allow people to make the most of their time spent waiting at the airport. Dubai International Airport is no exception – it’s glamorous, luxurious, and beautiful, just like the country!

When you travel solo, waiting at the airport for the flight is one of the most boring things to do. Being a solo traveller myself, I can understand how that feels. But the Dubai International Airport offers plenty of entertainment and fun activities for you to indulge in while you wait at the airport. 

If you are wondering what to do in Dubai airport during solo travel, worry not, I have got things sorted for you. Read on to know more about all the fun and entertainment that awaits you!

These are some of my top picks for things to do in Dubai airport during solo travel.

1. Visit the Zen Garden

If you are a nature lover, this pick is for you! The Zen garden is extremely beautiful and gives a vibe that’s completely in contrast with the crowd at the airport. The Zen garden consists of a tiny fish pond with different fish species, plenty of lush green trees, and wooden benches for people to sit on. You can either take a walk around to admire the beauty of the garden or just relax at the wooden benches amidst the greenery!

A little point to keep in mind, the Zen garden is only located on terminal 3. So do remember to check the Zen garden out if your flight takes off from terminal 3.

2. Relax in the lounge

Dubai International Airport is one of the most popular and lavish airports in the world. The interior designs and details are stunning and will probably leave you awestruck. In my opinion, spending time relaxing at the world-class lounge is always better than walking around the airport.

To make things even better for you, Dubai International Airport has multiple world-class lounges for you to choose from – Marhaba Lounge, Business Class Lounge, and International First Lounge. Believe me when I say each lounge is better than the other. I would highly recommend you do this while you wait for your flight.

3. Enjoy the free WiFi

While you relax in the lounge, a little treat like free WiFi wouldn’t hurt, right? Well, guess what? Dubai International Airport has free WiFi access for all travellers. You can video call your friends or family, upload pictures of the stunning international airport, or just surf the internet.

A little thing to make your experience of using free WiFi even better, if you have run out of battery on your phone and are not carrying your laptop with you, you can use the pay-to-use internet kiosk available at the airport!

4. Take a little nap in the sleep pods

I know sleeping may not sound like one of the things to do in Dubai airport during solo travel. But trust me, you do not want to miss this one. Terminal 3 of Dubai International Airport has these cute igloo-style pods that are meant for travellers to sleep in. A plus point, it has roll-down roofs! You will get a disposal headrest cover, a comfy mattress, pillow, and blanket inside each igloo. This is something you must not miss while travelling to Dubai.

5. My favourite thing to do in Dubai airport during solo travel: SHOPPING!

Dubai, which is also known as a paradise for shopaholics, has a few more things to offer to all the shopaholics out there. Dubai International Airport has stores that offer plenty of products at a reasonable price. Whether you are looking for some souvenirs or fashionable products, the duty-free shops at Dubai airport have it all!

6. Relax at the spa

Relaxing at the airport spa is one of the most fun things to do in Dubai airport during solo travel. It’s the perfect way to release all the tiredness you might have from travelling and walking around. Other than the massage services, the spas also offer manicure and pedicure services, body scrubbing, and aromatherapy!

7. Fill your tummy with delicious food

If you are a foodie just like me, you won’t be disappointed with the number of restaurants and cafes available at Dubai International Airport. You will find most of the popular cuisines from around the world in Dubai airport – Asian, Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Italian, Israeli, and local cuisines. 

Otherwise, if you want to have a quick bite instead of a full meal, you can head to McDonald’s, Starbucks, Burger King, or other such outlets.

8. Freshen up and take a shower

Even though this may not be something many people would prefer doing at the airport, it is still one of the most fun things to do in Dubai airport during solo travel. If you have an early morning flight and skip taking a shower (don’t worry, we all have skipped showers many times during such tight flight timings), you can freshen up at the airport in the luxury showers at the health club.

9. Fancy a workout or a swim at the airport?

Yes, Dubai is an all-rounder when it comes to providing things to its people and visitors. You can buy a pass to the G-force health club of Dubai airport. The health club has a swimming pool, gym, showers, sauna, and jacuzzi! It looks like a five-star hotel, and trust me, you won’t be feeling like you are having a shower, swimming, or working out at an airport!

10. Currency exchange at the airport

This is an essential part of any solo travel to an international destination. While you wait for your flight, you can get your currency exchanged to avoid any hassle later. You will find many currency exchange bureaus at Dubai International Airport. Also, these are available on all terminals, so you don’t panic!

11. Pray

Dubai Airport has many prayer rooms for people who would want to pray. If you are someone who religiously follows the prayer times, you can go to the ablution rooms and then head to the Muslim prayer rooms to pray. These rooms are very clean and beautifully maintained to respect people’s religion and beliefs.

A fun fact, parking lots in Dubai airport have prayer rooms too.

12. Visit Wings Bar

Wings Bar is one of the quietest and peaceful places in Dubai airport. You can relax in the room, beautifully designed with colourful walls and a huge stainless-steel bar for the visitors. Also, since the place is not quite known to a lot of people, it is usually less crowded, and you can easily find a place to sit.

Wings Bar serves some of the most delicious Danish pastries and coffee. I would highly recommend you check this place out, if not for the bar, then for the pastries and coffee!

While looking for things to do in Dubai, I stumbled upon a website that had blogged about all the hidden gems in Dubai. Wings Bar seemed like a convenient place to visit, and as it was at the airport, I ended up visiting it on my solo trip to Dubai. Believe me when I say their coffee is one of the best in the world, and I have tasted coffee at quite a lot of places!

13. Finish sending that file to your boss!

Although quite rare, there may arise a situation where you have a pending work assignment to send to your boss. Or an urgent meeting comes up that cannot be avoided. If you find yourself in such situations and are at Dubai airport, don’t worry, Dubai has got you covered. There are a business room and meeting centre designed especially to tackle such situations. The ambience is very quiet, and you can finish your work while you wait for your next flight!

14. Buy gold at the airport

Dubai is globally famous for its gold (at reasonable prices!). Within the country itself, you will find plenty of shops and stores that sell original gold. And there is a whole souk, also known as the market, dedicated to just gold – the Gold Souk!

If you do not get time to visit the Gold Souk during your stay in the country, well, you can do that at the airport. There are plenty of stores that sell original gold. Since these gold items, especially jewellery, are at such cheap rates, you wouldn’t be able to resist shopping quite a bit!

15. Click pictures!

Well, this one goes without saying. If you have a keen interest in photography, Dubai airport could be your next photography destination. It is one of the most beautiful airports in the world, and there are many picturesque places inside the airport itself. 

If you plan on taking pictures of people, I would recommend you to speak to them first. It is considered rude to click somebody’s pictures without consent, especially in Dubai. Otherwise, Dubai International Airport will not disappoint you when it comes to photography.

Well, these were some things to do in Dubai airport during solo travel. If you have a layover or about a day to kill at the airport, I would recommend you step out of the airport and explore some nearby places.

1. Burj Khalifa

what to do in dubai airport during solo travel

The iconic Burj Khalifa is the tallest building in the whole wide world. It is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the country, and guess what, it’s free of cost. You wouldn’t have to spend a penny to visit this stunning building. However, you will have to buy a ticket if you want to get to the topmost floor of the building and enjoy the breathtaking views.

It is located at a distance of 14 km from the airport, and you can easily take a taxi or metro to reach Burj Khalia.

2. Grand Mosque

Another famous place in Dubai, Grand Mosque, is definitely a must-visit if you have a few hours on your hand before your flight. Originally built in the 1900s, the mosque was demolished and rebuilt in 1960 and then 1998. The interiors are amazingly breathtaking as well. 

The Grand Mosque is at a distance of around 12 km from the airport. Also, remember you wear appropriate clothes before you decide to visit the Grand Mosque.

Read my guide on what to wear in Dubai here.

3. Heritage Village

If you are a history lover, you should not miss out on visiting the Heritage Village. It truly depicts the ancient culture and ethnicity of Dubai. You will find pretty much everything here. From traditional artefacts to handicrafts, from music to dance, from traditional and authentic cuisines to souvenirs – you name it, Heritage Village has got everything!

The distance between the Heritage Village and Dubai Airport is 12 km, and it opens every day from 8:30 am to 10:30 pm.

4. Bastakiya Quarters

If you want to know the history of Dubai and how the Arabs used to live in such hot temperatures near the desert, the Bastakiya Quarters is your answer. These quarters have traditional houses that depict the history of the country. The place is always open for visitors to explore, and now, there are restaurants, art galleries, and a cultural centre as well.

It is approximately 11 km from the airport, and you can reach Bastakiya Quarters by cab.

To know more about this beautiful place, check out this blog on things and top attractions in Basktakiya Quarters.

5. Dubai Creek

Dubai Creek is quite famous among tourists as it allows them to view the breathtaking Dubai skyline from a different perspective. The creek divides the country into two parts and is crowded at most times. 

It is at a distance of 9 km from the airport.

So, this brings us to the end of the blog. I hope you found some amazing things to do in Dubai airport during solo travel that suit your needs the best. If you find other things that you did on your solo trip to Dubai, do leave your suggestions below in the comment section, and I will try my best to try them out on my next trip!


An introverted blogger who is looking to make unforgettable solo travel memories with one short life.

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